CA: What inspired the name for Carpe Dream?
CD: It was inspired from Carpe Diem which is Latin for seize the day, thus Carpe Dream translates to “seize the dream”. The inspiration came from me wanting to inspire my generation to be proactive to make a difference in their own lives.
CA: I see you have a heavy usage of wings when it comes to your accessories, what is the symbolism behind the wings?
CD: The wings help to symbolize that the sky is the limit. The bracelets that you see with the wings are actually the Sky’s the Limit Collection. The wings are moreso there to remind people every time they look at their wrists to chase their dreams and to motivate them at times when they need it most.
CA: When it comes to the music industry, accessories are key. Quite a few celebrities are currently rocking your gear, how does it feel to get support from those big names?
CD: I love the support, it’s great. Number one, it is a great feeling that the celebrities really rock with what I am doing. I never had to impose on the artists or beg them to take a pic, they really rocked the bracelets on their own for shows, interview, pictures, etc. Most of the celebrities got hold of bracelets by friends and strong supporters of Carpe Dream who were ready when opportunities arose. People like Schoolboy and Ab-Soul rocked their bracelets for months. I really like that support, it was really inspiring for myself, and the people I shared it with on twitter and instagram. The reason why Carpe Dream has been involved with the industry is because I’m actively involved at events, shows, concerts, etc. and I’ve been blessed with opportunities to make things happen. The celebrities you see wearing Carpe Dream are celebrities who made their dreams become a reality and I felt like that really plays a part into the lifestyle of the brand. There’s a section on our homepage available for everyone to see, with pics of the different celebrities.
CA: Where do you get your influences from on the designs and concepts for your brand?
CD: I honestly just run with ideas and designs as they come. But also, some designs are just things that I would personally wear, things I like to see myself. It just turns out that other people find a liking to the things I make, and I see it as a blessing. I shy away from pulling inspirations from other fashion designers. It’s really just things that come to mind, ideas that come to mind and I bring those ideas to life. That’s what Carpe Dream is really all about. When you have an idea or a dream, you shouldn’t let it pass you by. You should try to make it happen, do whatever is necessary to start, and next thing you know after some time you’ll be more involved then you would have thought. Next thing you know, things end up happening for you.
CA: What do you feel is the biggest asset that you guys have right now?
CD: I think the biggest asset is the fanbase around Carpe Dream. I’ve been doing this for three years now and Carpe Dream has grown to about 6500 followers on Twitter and Instagram . I’ve gotten support from all over the states and also a strong support from European customers. I really feel like that is my biggest asset because no matter what I do next, there will be people there to support it. It is a strong foundation to make the next step to continue to build.
CA: And the biggest challenge/opportunity you have going forward when it comes to the brand?
CD: I think the biggest challenge is evolving, being able to step out of the box in order to take the next big step. Carpe Dream is really more than just a bracelet line. It’s not just a jewelry line. It’s really supposed to be something bigger. The next step for Carpe Dream is to provide clothing and a wider variety of accessories. I eventually want to be able to branch out to into all different types of industries such as the music industry, video production, photography, etc. There are really no limits to what Carpe Dream can be. I’ve always had dreams of owning my own business, a huge fortune 500 business that led in its relative industry. But right now, in the near future, that’s the biggest challenge: to make that next step. In 2015, there are plans for more clothes and accessories of all types for Carpe Dream.
CA: I know you started off with clothing. What made you take the backseat with the clothing and introduce the bracelets?
CD: I never actually made clothing for Carpe Dream prior to the logo tees I just dropped. Carpe Dream began with bracelets and eventually adopted snapback hats. I did clothing way back in 2006-2007, it was under a different brand which I called Meis. I eventually stepped away from that and took a few years not doing any branding or clothing related work. In the summer of 2011, I came up with an idea for a bracelet and brought that idea to life. My initial intention was to make these bracelet only for myself, but it turned out that a lot of people liked the idea. It started with friends and family taking notice, and then random people I ran into on the street showed interests, then it continued to go from there. That’s how I began selling bracelets. It wasn’t intended to be bracelets to sell or a bracelet company. It just happened to be that way and I felt blessed to be in the position to make my dreams become a reality.
CA: How do you feel your brand stands out from the rest of the pack in the clothing game?
CD: I think it stands out and will continue to stand out because its been original since Day 1. It stood out from the crowd and offered something different for consumers to go after. The designs that are coming will possibly be all hand-made by myself. That includes the clothing and accessories that are planned for the next year. I have this personal stigma about the “clothing game” that I feel a lot of clothing brands out there base their designs on whats trendy right now or on other things that were already done before. They flip logos and make knock offs of big name brands or classic pieces. I don’t feel like there’s much originality out there. My brand is going to stay original because the ideas are going to come from my mind or personal inspirations. It is going to feel like street wear with a twist on the high-end side of fashion as well. I’m confident that the items will be stuff that people gravitate towards. I don’t want to limit myself and I don’t want to be labeled under just one category. I want the freedom to do many different things and that is what will help it stand out.
CA: Where do you want your brand to go in the future?
CD: In the near future, as I mentioned, I want to get into clothing next year. In the mean time I have been flirting with managing an artist and freelancing video production/photography, things like that. I am building my skills so eliminate limitations, and within five years, by God’s grace, everything should come together.
CA: What is the best advice you can give someone with a strong desire to create a brand?
CD: For one, you have to be original. Make sure what you’re providing is original so that it stands out from the crowd so that it can gain its own attention. If you are doing something everyone else is doing, you are going to make it hard for yourself. You are starting right off into competition, you should start off doing something different to stand out. If you have an idea, bring it to life, what is there to lose? If you try and happen to fail, you build off of that, learn from your mistakes, and keep trying at it with the new things you learned. If you succeed at something you once only imagined doing, then you should already be feeling motivated to recreate that same feeling of accomplishing something that was once just an idea. So in all: take that chance, be original, and bring the ideas to life. Don’t let the ideas pass you by. You never truly know what could be if you never take the chance.